Arrowheadlines: Chiefs News 8/12

KANSAS CITY MO - JANUARY 09: Running back Jamaal Charles #25 of the Kansas City Chiefs runs for a first down against the Baltimore Ravens during their 2011 AFC wild card playoff game at Arrowhead Stadium on January 9 2011 in Kansas City Missouri. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

Good morning! Here is today's Kansas City Chiefs news. Happy Sunday!

They had just five rushing touchdowns all last season and ran for more than 166 yards just once. They accomplished that against the Cardinals without much help from Jamaal Charles, who got the ball just four times in his first game back after tearing his ACL and having reconstructive surgery.

The running game fell apart without Charles last season. The Chiefs set out to bolster their depth at running back by signing Peyton Hillis and drafting Cyrus Gray.

Crennel Likes What He Sees In Chiefs' Running Game from KC Star

Yeah, I know, it's a passing league, and running's not supposed to matter. Only it does, especially in Kansas City.

When it had a healthy Charles and the league's top-ranked running game it won the AFC West. That was two years ago. Then, when it subtracted Charles and plummeted to 15th in rushing and tied for 25th in yards per carry it lost more than it won.

That was last season, and it underscored the importance of Charles -- and the running game -- to a club that desperately needs both to succeed.

Charles Holds Key To Both Cassel's Improvement And Chiefs' Fortunes from CBS Sports

Last year, the Chiefs were awful in the preseason and it spilled over to a horrible start to the regular season. If the first preseason game in 2012 is any indication, the Chiefs are heading into the regular season on the right track.

Kansas City looked crisp and executed beautifully under coach Romeo Crennel, who finished the 2011 season as the Chiefs' interim head coach.

Observation Deck: Cardinals-Chiefs from ESPN

The Cardinals' first-team defense is supposed to be the strength of the team, but that hasn't been the case through the first two preseason games. The Chiefs put together 72-yard touchdown drives on each of their first two possessions and scored three of the first four times they had the ball.

Whisenhunt said Arizona didn't scheme to stop what the Chiefs were doing but added, "Be very clear. I don't want to make excuses. It's still blocking and tackling and making plays."

Arizona Cardinals' Ken Whisenhunt: No Time For Excuses from The Arizona Republic

Crennel said in a conference call on Saturday with reporters that, ''Nobody has told me anything, and so if he reports to camp, that will be the first time I see him and then we'll go about business as we need to. I don't know what's going to happen. I haven't had any conversations or anything like that.''

Crennel Says No Knowledge Of Bowe Sighting from The Associated Press via Yahoo! Sports

By the time there were 2 minutes gone in the second quarter, Kansas City's offense had racked up 193 yards and had scored 17 points on three of four possessions. Not a bad start to the season - especially compared to last year's debacle under Todd Haley.

Offense Rules As Chiefs Beat Cardinals 27-17 In First Preseason Game from

Copper was a defenseless player;

Rules allow defenders to hit defenseless players as long as the defenders do not initiate contact with their helmets, and as long as defenders do not strike the defenseless players in the head or neck area;

Wilson did not use his helmet to deliver the blow;

Wilson did not strike Copper in the head or neck area.

By these measures, the hit on Copper was a legal one. The only uncertainty, in my view, involves the timing.

Legal Hits On Defenseless Players Revisited from ESPN

Longtime Kansas City Chiefs fan Kansas Hine doesn't care that he is in the minority and proudly dusts off his jersey every season. He feels kindred with Saints fans, having had countless losing seasons and winning only one Super Bowl.

Fans, Retailers Ready For NFL Preseason from The Shreveport Times
The Chiefs were the most injury-riddled club in the division last year and yet almost stole the title. Don't be surprised if they go back to the playoffs in 2012. Running back Jamaal Charles looks sharp after last year's knee blowout; at least the injury happened in September, giving him a head start on rehab. The Chiefs realize Charles has to be spotted with another heavy-usage back, so Peyton Hillis is around to handle 40 percent of the work. Charles is an excellent second-round pick if you can swing it, even with his modest touchdown upside (Hillis figures to get all the chippies).

Patterson looks at the photo again. Drew is wearing a Maine football jersey signed by all the players. Coach Jack Cosgrove chose to give her No. 9.

"Jovan Belcher wore that number," said Patterson. Belcher is now a starting linebacker for the Kansas City Chiefs. "Jordan Stevens wore it, too." Stevens, a Mt. Blue High graduate and another linebacker, is an assistant coach on Cosgrove's staff.

"Coach gives that number to the player who works the hardest. The toughest player."

As Tough As A Linebacker, Just As Determined To Win from The Maine Sunday Telegram

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